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Adelaide Makerfaire 2016 Review

This year I traveled to visit the Adelaide Makerfaire.  After hosting consecutive mini-makerfaires, Adelaide stepped up to host the larger version of the event in 2016, making it the largest of its type in Australia with over 100 stall holders.

Here’s a short video tour of the event:

The event seemed to be aimed towards families, with a heavy focus on interactive, participatory displays.  This included a smoke cannon, pictured below.

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I was very impressed by the calibre of projects on display.  In particular, the Adelaide Robot Combat stall had a fully enclosed featherweight robot fighting ring available for kids to have a go at controlling their own robot.

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I was also very impressed by the FHTBot Workshop hosted by Hackerspace Adelaide and Flinders University.  The bots were controllable via mobile app and balanced on two wheels.  These little bots were $20 a kit, and they gave away 100 over the course of the day.

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This glass artist was working on pieces during the day.

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There were lots of short and sweet guest speakers during the day, which were casual but very engaging.

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After experiencing Adelaide Makerfaire, I think Brisbane’s Maker Movement definitely has room to grow.  I really admired the high level of projects on display in the robotics, STEM and technology categories and participatory displays.  However, there was a solid chunk of the festival dedicated to craft merchants, which gave the event a bit of a ‘craft show’ feel.  If these types of stall holders had more of an innovative twist or higher craftmanship, I think it would have been more appropriate to the theme.

I also felt as if there should have been more opportunities to buy something to take home, like kits, filament or gadgets.  There was definitely more room for businesses and manufacturers alongside Lulzbot and 3D Systems for makers to connect with.  I also thought the showcase of school projects was very impressive and inspirational to young and old generations.  I came out of the faire feeling very inspired for future events across Australia.